Mala Mala, a new documentary about Puerto Rico’s diverse trans scene, starring Puerto Rico’s most visible trans activist, Ivana Fred, and season six RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant April Carrión, received a standing ovation after its world premiere last night at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival. Watch the trailer below.
April, I’m told, wore a beautiful black gown emblazoned with the film’s credits down the back – and the photographer’s went NUTS.
Funded partly by Kickstarter, Mala Mala was three years in the making, and brings together very different stories — from Sandy, an unapologetic sex worker in San Juan’s rough La 15 neighborhood, to Paxx, a brave young trans man with no apparent local support system, to Samantha, a striking yet timid person who faces the world with haunting optimism. From Queerty:
“At turns tender, funny, raw and gorgeous, the film also covers a profound moment in local LGBT history: last year’s passage of Senate Bill 238, which bans discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
“The bill really just came up during the last eight months of production,” Sickles said. “We got a call from Ivana one day saying like, ‘Oh hey, we’re going to the senate to fight for our rights.’ We’re like, ‘What? Okay, so we need to be there.’ So we were lucky enough to follow it along, and to see it passed into law was golden for us.”
Another part of the film reveals the excitement within The Doll House, Puerto Rico’s acclaimed drag troupe, as April Carrión prepares to depart for the mainland for her stint on RuPaul’s smash reality show.
Read more at OUT.